ruth-ubaldo-story1.jpgPeople ask me how I chose Germany, but a lot of times I felt like Germany chose me. It was such a beautiful time. I loved it and I was surprised a lot at myself and the world, and at people and how God showed up. I got to travel. I didn’t realize it’s so easy to travel once you’re there. It was 20 Euros to go to Prague.

They have students from all over the world at Göttingen. I met people from Ghana, Hong Kong, Slovakia…all over. I didn’t really expect that. And I lived in the theological house, so it was mostly Germans but there was a mix of international students, mostly theology students. It was a really nice mix. And I lived with Georg [Stahlmann] and then he came to Candler. So that was really fun.

Going to Germany, I still didn’t know what I wanted to do after graduation. And I remember that I went on a run and I just felt this strong invitation to go serve immigrants at the border and to enter the process for ordained ministry as a deacon. I didn’t expect that invitation to come in that moment, it was so mundane. But once I felt that, it felt like so many things made sense.

Part of why I was able to hear what God was putting on my heart and my calling is that I had a little bit more space to think and breathe. At Göttingen I felt like everyone worked hard and studied a lot, but they also took time to go for walks just for fun with people and go to coffee shops and cake shops. I was surprised that students were doing this and weren’t in the library. It’s a different structure. That allowed me some space to be listening.

Photo: Ruth (second from left, front row) and friends ice skating in Germany.